AgTech News Dashboard: 28 September 2020

Our feature story explains how soil moisture sensors are helping farmers to make better management decisions. In other news, a study has looked at the consequences of the agtech revolution for farmers, a new Regional Digital Tech Hub announced by the Australian Government, and an agtech funding boost for the wine industry, plus more…

Source: Pycno

Making better cropping decisions with soil moisture sensors

Farming in Australia’s variable climate means it’s critical to preserve and use every bit of available moisture. Farmers can keep track of their soil moisture through the use of soil moisture sensors. But how do you decide if a sensor can add value to your farm business, how do you choose a device, and how do you interpret the data they generate? Having an improved understanding of soil water gives a better understanding of the yield potential of crops, and therefore allows better decision-making around whether to apply inputs such as nitrogen, and if so, how much.

Read the full article.

Image by DJI-Agras from Pixabay

The fourth agricultural revolution is coming – but who will really benefit?

Given the potentially transformative effects of upcoming technology on farming – positive and negative – it’s vital that we pause and reflect before the revolution takes hold. It must work for everyone, whether it be farmers (regardless of their size or enterprise), landowners, farm workers, rural communities or the wider public. Yet, in a recently published study it was found that policymakers and the media are framing the fourth agricultural revolution as overwhelmingly positive, without giving much focus to the potential negative consequences.

Read more: The fourth agricultural revolution is coming – but who will really benefit?, The Conversation, 14 September 2020

Image by Thomas Schaefer/Unsplash

$870k project to boost wine industry AgTech

The South Australian Government and Wine Australia have partnered to initiate an $870,000 national AgTech wine project to help boost emerging technologies for the wine industry.

Wine Australia CEO Andreas Clark said the project is being initiated in South Australia but will be activated nationally to help strengthen the wine sector by increasing familiarity and confidence in adopting AgTech solutions to benefit grape and wine operations.

Read more: $870k project to boost wine industry AgTech, Food & Drink Business, 11 September 2020

Image source: AusVeg

Precision ag pays off in bumper celery crop

A Victorian vegetable farm is reaping the benefits from a trial of precision agriculture technologies to improve soil and crop health.

Since 2018, vegetable growing operation Schreurs & Sons has explored the application of precision agriculture in celery, leek, and baby leaf production systems at its Koo Wee Rup farm, about 80 kilometres south-east of Melbourne.

A range of technologies were trialled at the site, including drones, EM38 mapping, gridded soil sampling, variable rate fertiliser spreading and remote monitoring of pests and beneficial insects. These technologies were put to the test to find out how they could deliver greater production efficiencies and better returns, which will ultimately support the sustainability of the farm and the business.

Read more: Precision ag pays off in bumper celery crop, AusVeg, 16 September 2020

New Regional Digital Tech Hub announced

The Australian Government recently announced the National Farmers’ Federation (NFF) has been engaged to develop and operate the new Regional Digital Technology Hub.

The Hub will support people in regional Australia with information to find the right telecommunication solutions for their homes and businesses, and better harness the benefits of connectivity and technology.

People will be able to access support over the phone, through social media and online, to help solve issues with their phone and internet services, find the latest applications for their homes or businesses, and understand their rights as consumers and where to go to escalate faults.

Read more: NFF to design and run the new Regional Digital Tech Hub, Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government, 17 September 2020

New Solutions in the AgTech Finder Directory

Optiweigh System by Optiweigh

A mobile, automatic, in-paddock, patented weighing system that solves the problem of being able to collect animal weights regularly, efficiently and without animal stress.

Produce Packing Robot by LYRO

LYRO offers robotic solutions for pick and pack that can easily be retrofitted to existing packing operations.

Fieldbot by Cloud Farming

Innovative robotic transporter that increases the efficiency and safety of horticultural harvest processes for high-value crops.

Search the Agtech Finder Directory for your agtech solution.